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IBM Contributes to New Standard That Improves Chip Design Process

IBM Haifa Labs News Center

Specification and Verification Language Selected as EDA Standard

Haifa, Israel, September 4, 2003 ... IBM today announced that the Accellera EDA standards organization has approved Property Specification Language (PSL) 1.01 as an official standard. PSL, based on IBM's Sugar language will advance assertion-based verification in simulation and formal verification, the two prevailing techniques for assuring the correctness of chip design prior to fabrication.

More than 40 individuals representing over 20 companies participated in the efforts to form the PSL standard from its Sugar basis. PSL is a language for the formal specification of hardware and is used by engineers to specify the functional properties of logic designs. These properties, in turn, serve as input to property-checking tools, which are key to modern-day functional verification. More and more EDA companies are supporting verification tools driven by PSL. To support the growing adoption of the language, IBM provides an open source Sugar parser to tool developers.

"The approval of Accellera's PSL standard, based on IBM's technology contribution, is a significant milestone for Accellera and improves the productivity of designers doing system-level design and verification," noted Accellera chairman Dennis Brophy. "Accellera members and the PSL technical team have done an outstanding job to get PSL ready for deployment."

"The new standard will help design and verification engineers, as well as tool developers, meet the demands of the chip design and EDA industries and provide competitive advantages to their customers," stated Dr. Michael Rodeh, Director of Haifa Research Lab where the Sugar language was conceived. "The ratification of PSL by the board of Accellera will expedite the dissemination of advanced specification and verification methodologies."

"PSL is a high-quality language with a proven track record of use in chip design projects", said Harry Foster, head of the Accellera technical committee where the complete language reference manual (LRM) for PSL has been developed. "It meets and exceeds all the requirements we have defined in the beginning of the language selection process. It is extremely rewarding to note the wide industry adoption of the language."

To accelerate the adoption of PSL, 15 companies have combined forces to form the PSL/Sugar Consortium. The purpose of this organization is to drive the development of tools and methodologies that will support the new standard. The new organization has held its first meeting at the Design Automation Conference (DAC) in Anaheim California. The meeting as attracted a record number of attendees and included presentations from representative of semiconductor companies who presented verification methodologies based on PSL.

For information on the new PSL standard, see

For more information on the PSL/Sugar Consortium, see

For additional information, review the Sugar homepage at

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